Photo by Muffy Aldrich
The Modern Guide to The Thing Before Preppy

Tuesday, April 19, 2022

Dark Green Windows, White Trim, White Clapboards, and Wood Shingles

Photo by Salt Water New England
There is a uniform for classic New England summer houses.  These houses are non-winterized. They combine dark green paint, (on windows or shutters), wood shingles and white trim.  And sometimes they have wings (or other attached structures) in white clapboards. Lilacs are almost mandatory.

These structures go by the same name as, but give a completely different feel than, the ever more common and newer year-round, large and vaguely-contemporary looking second houses, replete with central air-conditioning, black windows, and modern cable deck railing. 


  1. You’ve nailed it. The lilacs are a must. And a nice cottage always has a good size porch.

  2. The cabled railings are always a giveaway.

  3. Hydrangea as a replacement for Lilacs sometimes

  4. I dunno ... the white window trim always seems to me as glaring as white eyeliner around a human eye. It distracts from the lovely reflectivity of the window glass (preferably old and wavy.) As on so many Nantucket houses, grey or taupe trim looks so much subtly better.

  5. What a wonderful photograph! Would not change a thing! Thank you so very much! Cheers!

  6. Ours used to have green windows back in the day. Actually the windows on the garage/barn are still green. It has very definitely been winterized and services upgraded to modern standards.

  7. Thank you for this lovely post. (It's killing me!)
    Homesick in Colorado...


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